College Football Picks: Louisiana-Monroe vs. Georgia Preview

David Lawrence

Wednesday, September 2, 2015 2:33 PM GMT

Wednesday, Sep. 2, 2015 2:33 PM GMT

Louisiana-Monroe is priced as high as +9000 in current College Football odds as they visit Georgia. We are confident that the Bulldogs will win by at least 35 points.

Momentum
The Louisiana-Monroe Warhawks finished last season 4-8. They have steadily moved downward relative to a few seasons ago. In 2012, ULM went 8-5 and reached the Independence Bowl, the first and still only bowl in the history of the program, which has competed since 1975. Things looked really bright for the Warhawks. Making a breakthrough can be a catalyst for many more years of high quality. Instead, it’s been just the opposite. ULM has lost momentum, failing to sustain what it had done in 2012. The 2013 team went 6-6, and last year’s group went 4-8. This season marks a fresh start, but the Warhawks need to prove they belong on the same field as an SEC school such as Georgia.

The Bulldogs went 10-3 last season, winning the Belk Bowl over Louisville. That game, however, featured a lot of injuries on both sides, so it was hard to use it as a major point of evaluation for Georgia. The Bulldogs did win 10 games, but at Georgia, the expectation is to win the SEC East at the very least, and sometimes win the SEC. The Bulldogs last won the SEC in 2012, but last year, Georgia finished behind the Missouri Tigers in the division, as was the case in 2013 as well. Georgia is trying to take the next step as a program, returning to the top level of the SEC. Most places love 10-3 seasons. Georgia would at least like to go 10-2 in the regular season, and then lose a third game either in the SEC title game or in a bowl.

 

Line Moves
The line started with Georgia as a 35-point favorite on the College Football Odds and it’s basically held steady. We know that isn’t very good. The Warhawks play in a weak conference, the Sun Belt, to begin with. That they’ve won two fewer games than the year before over the course of two straight seasons lends a lot of credence to the idea that they will continue to struggle this season.

Of course the public believes that Georgia can simply run the ball down ULM’s throat with stronger linemen and Heisman Trophy candidate Nick Chubb, who is expected to be one of the best running backs in the country but the question is if they can run away with this and cover a huge number. Hard to say.

 

Notable Injuries
The Warhawks have three players listed as questionable for this game: wide receiver Ajalen Holley, tight end Alec Osborne, and linebacker Hunter Kissinger. The Kissinger situation concerns an injury; the other two situations are undisclosed.

Georgia is without receiver Justin Scott-Wesley due to a knee injury, and the same is true for fullback Christian Payne. Defensive lineman Jonathan Ledbetter is listed as questionable for undisclosed reasons.

 

Handicapping Huge Point Spread in Week 1
Georgia can indeed expect to simply stuff the ball down ULM’s throat between the tackles. The Bulldogs do not need a complicated game plan to win easily and we are willing to add them to our College Football picks expecting that Georgia should cover the number here.

College Football Free Pick: Georgia -35 at The Greek

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